Lars von Trier: Actually, I'm Not Sorry for Hitler Joke

'You can't be sorry about something that's fundamentally you,' he tells GQ
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 23, 2011 10:40 AM CDT
A file picture shows Danish director Lars Von Trier showing his tattoo during the photocall of 'Melancholia' presented in competition at the 64th Cannes Film Festival on May 18, 2011 in Cannes.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Lars von Trier apologized almost immediately for calling himself a Nazi and claiming to sympathize with Adolf Hitler at Cannes this year, but it turns out the Danish film director is actually not sorry. “To say I'm sorry for what I said is to say I'm sorry for what kind of a person I am, I'm sorry for my morals, and that would destroy me as a person. It's not true. I'm not sorry. I am not sorry for what I said,” he explains to GQ. “I'm sorry that it didn't come out more clearly. I'm not sorry that I made a joke, but I'm sorry that I didn't make it clear that it was a joke. But I can't be sorry for what I said—it's against my nature.”

Even so, he admits he’s avoided watching clips from the now-infamous press conference, and as he watches it with the GQ writer he physically winces, leans away, covers his face with his hands, and ultimately can’t make it to the end of the clip. “This is why I shouldn't do interviews—I should just shut up and I should do my films. This was terrible to listen to,” he says. But he had no idea at the time it would turn into such a controversy: “I took for granted that they knew I was not a Nazi,” he says. But later, he notes, “I believe a potential of being a Nazi lies in all human beings.” Check out the full article for much, much more on the way von Trier thinks, and why.

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